It would be rather dumb to write a game report about yesterday’s 90 minutes against Reading, as the game was rather one way and can be easily resumed: we played VERY offensively, launched many attacks but failed time after time to create real danger and score.
But there are several things we can learn from yesterday.
Against Reading we played a very solid defense (it is no surprise that I have two Reading defenders in my Fantasy team). A solidly organized defense, a foretaste of the defenses we can expect in Europe and we failed to create genuine chances. Our best chances were a second line shot of Carrick which went over and a run in of Rooney. The moment Rooney got injured.
As I wrote before already, we fail in the air. 12 Corners without scoring are the evidence of the lack of an aerial striking force.
Our midfield has shown that thy can easily control a game, but Reading offered them space. Actually we had almost 75% possession and more than 62% territorial advantage. This also shows in our great passing success of 84%. But no pass had the potential to open the game, to split Reading’s defense. The creativity department had taken a day off and Scholes or even Giggs didn’t try often enough from second line.
In the box itself there were hardly any combinations. Especially when there are 7 defenders a little pass in this whole crowd can do miracles.
After Rooney’s replacement (Rooney’s out for 2 months) we noticed how much we need a striker in the box, someone who can finish the eyes closed. A RVN, a Klinsmann, a Völler. With Saha, who’s more often injured than anything else, as our own alternative, things look somber IMO.
But SAF ruled out looking for a replacement. Because of Roon’s injury Tevez will already feature against Portsmouth on Wednesday.
Conclusion: we need fighters. We need workers. We need to go there where it hurts. Go in the box, follow the guy who penetrates. And while working anyway… try to find a solution for standard situations since we have no aerial force.
Hopefully the trip to Fratton Park will show more genuine danger, because on Sunday again we face a solid block in front of the goal when we play City.
A small question: anyone interested in live updates during the game?